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Author Topic: ...wtf...Stalin  (Read 3667 times)

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Offline Zakharra

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #25 on: February 08, 2009, 10:40:13 AM »
People like Hitler, and maybe Stalin according to most of you, existed to murder and to kill. Call me stubborn or narrow minded but for me Putin is somebody, just like Stalin, who helped Russia from the gutter into something beautiful.

   ???  Maybe? Stalin was a documented killer on par with Hitler What he did to his nation was an abomination. Killing millions of his own people with his orders. There's no real doubt about that. The USSR was nothing beautiful, but a brutal machine that wanted to put the entire world under the iron thumb of communism.

Online Dashenka

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #26 on: February 08, 2009, 11:13:30 AM »
According to you. I know millions of people who still see the USSR as something beautiful, because of the Communism. The fact that most Western countries are capitalistic and decadent to the bone means that most of those countries do not see the true beauty of a Communism.

The US was now trying to plunge the entire planet into war and decadent capitalism. Missile shield here, guantanamo bay there. Katrina victims have been left out for days before the US government did something if anything at all. How many people die of starvation or poor health care in the US daily?

In the USSR, EVERYBODY had food, healthcare, education, etc. That is the true beauty of a communism. If you weren't born in a communist country you wouldn't understand. The USSR was much much more than Stalin alone.

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Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #27 on: February 08, 2009, 11:33:57 AM »
As an ideal, communism is a very wonderful idea - John Lennon's Imagine was based on the concept, as I recall.  The problem is in implementation, and the fact that it is an economic system, not a form of government.  (A lot of people try to make 'communism' out to be the opposite of 'democracy', which annoys me.) 

The problem comes in when 'need' and 'ability' don't balance out over the grand scale.  For example, when a 'baby boom' goes through the energetic youth stage, ability is high and need is easily balanced out, but when that boom hits the 60+ age range, and becomes unable to produce as well, need increases by several orders of magnitude and may outstrip the younger generations ability.

Part of my father's side of the family came from the USSR (Belarus), and I've heard stories of the bread lines, so I have to argue a bit with the success of everybody having food, but I'll accept the lumps that my own country deserves.  FEMA botched Katrina big time.  Gitmo, in my mind, is on par with the gulags.  'No Child Left Behind' makes me shudder in the way it has been implemented. 

No country or form of government is perfect, and all leaders are human.  We can only hope that our current leaders remember that.

Offline Zakharra

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2009, 12:28:33 PM »
According to you. I know millions of people who still see the USSR as something beautiful, because of the Communism. The fact that most Western countries are capitalistic and decadent to the bone means that most of those countries do not see the true beauty of a Communism.

The US was now trying to plunge the entire planet into war and decadent capitalism. Missile shield here, guantanamo bay there. Katrina victims have been left out for days before the US government did something if anything at all. How many people die of starvation or poor health care in the US daily?

In the USSR, EVERYBODY had food, healthcare, education, etc. That is the true beauty of a communism. If you weren't born in a communist country you wouldn't understand. The USSR was much much more than Stalin alone.

 According to most of Europe and the Western world it was not beautiful. Dissent was put down down by harsh means. Those who disagreed were shipped off to gulags in remote parts of the country. It forced a rigid way of life on people, giving little opportunity for individuals to raise themselves up, to improve their means. The leaders lived very well while the lower classes can and did poorly. How many milions died in famines the government caused? The Ukraine is an example.
 
Capitalism is not an evil in itself. It's an engine that has led the Western world to vast wealth and a decent standard of living, while bringing in comforts that people want. Does it have it's problems? Yes, but it gives the worker incentive to improve his/her means if they want to and have the drive to do so. Property belongs to the person, not to the State. That does not mean we are decadent. The US is not trying to plunge the world into war. That's a misconception and wrong. Are we at war? Yes, but  not with any nation, but an ideal. Which is much harder to fight.

 Also the US/Western world did not invade an ally to keep them from withdrawing from NATO, as Hungary was by the Soviets.

 The missile shield I can see why Russia dislikes since it can be used to neutralize their missiles. /shrug The US has an obligation to protect it's allies, as does Russia. If they cannot overcome it, that is their problem militarily. As it stands, the US does not do first strike nuclear attacks, and never will. No one wants to be the first nation to launch nukes. That action alone would earn the anger of the entire world.

 You paint the USSR as a pleasant place, if so why were there guards on the borders to keep people from leaving? If it was a good place, people would be wanting to move there to live. Not to live in what most of the world saw as an armed prison camp. If communism is so good, why did it fail?  Gitmo.. the detainees there should have been handled better, processed faster. In that I disagree with what Bush did. That could have been handled better, but it's hardly a gulag. The detainees are well fed and  hardly any methods that were employed in a gulag can be considered to be used there.

 Over all, the USSR wasn't a good nation. Strong and powerful yes, but not good. Russia can be one I hope.

 After hurricane Katrina, that was a debacle on the local, state and federal level, with politicians scrambling to look like they were 'Doing Something'. As I understood it, FEMA wasn't even allowed to move in until the state governor asked for federal help. A failure at all levels of government.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2009, 02:06:08 PM by Zakharra »

Offline The Overlord

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #29 on: February 08, 2009, 05:20:41 PM »


In the USSR, EVERYBODY had food, healthcare, education, etc. That is the true beauty of a communism. If you weren't born in a communist country you wouldn't understand. The USSR was much much more than Stalin alone.


That's the party tagline, but the way I always heard it, the 'food for everyone' meant you were standing in line for hours and what you got was subsistence level bread and sausage.

And yes a communist system (but not only a communist system), provides for education costs but there is no leeway in there. A failed test means they might push you into a field of their choosing, not yours.


I'm completely open to the fact that that's Western propaganda, but I've never heard anything redeeming about the social services in the old USSR. The fact that a lot more people were trying to slip through the Iron Curtain while getting into Western nations makes a strong case, so long as that's reliable.


A lot of stuff is over the top in the West but we eat what we want and we go to college for the fields we want. Some may call it decadence, I just call it...quality of life.  :-\

Online Dashenka

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #30 on: February 08, 2009, 05:34:25 PM »
quality of life?

Flushing 9 liters of perfectly good drinking water through the toilet, tossing away the crusts of your pizza or the leftovers of other food, taking the car for a 5 minute drive when you can take the bike or walk, going on holiday each year, buying a new tv every two years, having three computers in the house.... to me that's decadence.

The food in the Soviet Union was a problem indeed but in comparison to now, less people lived in poverty than they do now. I'm not saying the USSR was holy lands but for a lot of people who didn't have the means to leave the country, the situation they find themselves in now, are much worse than the situations they were in, during the Soviet era.

Offline The Overlord

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #31 on: February 08, 2009, 06:03:21 PM »


Flushing 9 liters of perfectly good drinking water through the toilet, tossing away the crusts of your pizza or the leftovers of other food, taking the car for a 5 minute drive when you can take the bike or walk, going on holiday each year, buying a new tv every two years, having three computers in the house.... to me that's decadence.



You must have missed the part where I said a lot of Western stuff is over the top, but I was talking about the necessities.


For the record, not everyone is on the same scale here in the West. The toilets in my house are set for 1.5 gallons or 5.6 liters, which is a standard that newer facilities are made to here in the States compared to much more wasteful, older models. Are they still able to be better? I'm sure they are, but in modern plumbing systems, some water gets used regardless...if you don't want to do that may as well dig a hole in your backyard and cover it with a shed for those winter mornings when your pee freezes before it hits the ground.

For the record I eat my pizza crust, I'm not among the wasteful bastards that often leave half a slice sitting in the mall food court. What waste food our household does produce, vegetable trimmings, etc. goes into the backyard to compost or feed the local fauna in the area, where either way it goes back into the system somehow.

All my drives are well past five minutes and not practical for a bicycle or a walk, sadly, but we do consolidate our outings to get as much stuff done in one trip as we can.

I don't go on holiday every year, actually, but don't wave you finger at the West if we do. An emerging China has proven every single other country will do exactly what the US does if it gets the means...there's no moral high ground here, it just boils down to can and cannot.


We've got/had TV's in this house that are well past ten years old, and I currently have ONE computer. Should I elect to buy another, it's because I'll have a need for it, not a frivolous purchase.


Decadence, by the way, is a very loose word with a lot of latitude in meaning. People have applied it through various cultural, political, and religious lenses, and often it boils down to simple personal or local perspective.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2009, 03:56:07 PM by The Overlord »

Offline Trieste

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Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #32 on: February 08, 2009, 08:01:39 PM »
I've managed to agree with both Inkidu and Overlord in the same month. I must be losing my mind.

There are many, many, many accounts of American behaviour and stereotypes in the rest of the world, and they are of course not universal. It takes many parts to make up a whole, and that includes both good parts and bad parts.

Or, I could be mistaken and you could spend your long, lonely days as a Commie cleaning your pistol for whenever the next call comes for a firing squad while getting shitfaced on vodka, which you drink like water. Or maybe instead you spend a lot of time piling your money into your wheelbarrow, packing it full and hoping that you will have enough to buy a loaf of bread. Or maybe you spend your days playing poker and smoking in a factory instead of working, because you know that your wonderful country will pay you regardless of how hard you work.

I'm not even going to address your specifics because a) Overlord already did and b) I believe I've proved my point.

Online Dashenka

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #33 on: February 09, 2009, 03:58:51 AM »
Speaking of stereotypes...

You don't agree with my view of Russia and the USSR and that's fine. It's a free world after all.

Offline Lithos

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #34 on: February 09, 2009, 04:27:01 AM »
Or maybe you spend your days playing poker and smoking in a factory instead of working, because you know that your wonderful country will pay you regardless of how hard you work.

This is one of the things in this discussion that has not much to do with original subject, but is something that should be addressed still. In some places, people actually appreciate work itself and working for something, it is not all about money everywhere. Even if such view of work is foreign to your mindset does not mean that it would not be popular somewhere else. Where I am, you will still have your apartment, and you will still get by in your life just fine, even if you did not work at all, yet still people both work hard and try to get rid of being unemployded as quickly as possible. So what according to your view would destroy your work efficiency and economy, works just fine elsewhere. People just are not the same everywhere. Trust me, systems not based entirely on hunt for profit and personal gain can and do work.

Real communism is just as far away dream as real democracy though. Neither will never exist so talk about politics in that sense is meaningless.

As far as Stalin goes, to retain in original subject. He was great figure in soviet history, but he was _not_ a good person. He did some things that made hitler look like schoolboy. The thing is though that while he did those things, he united and strenghtened USSR as well - even if it was with horribly big price in blood. I think it is this unity that people there appreciate, not his character or the things he did cause of his paranoia to people around him.
« Last Edit: February 09, 2009, 04:40:24 AM by Lithos »

Offline consortium11

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #35 on: February 09, 2009, 04:40:03 AM »
On the O/T aspect of the nature of work, there are some people who will work for works sake; if they could have a near identical life of complete leisure, they would still go out and do a job. However, I generally believe these are the minority. If you honestly looked at the vast majority of people (myself included to a certain extent) if I could live the live I've become accustomed to without having to work at all, I'd be very tempted to never get a job. Even if I had to give up certain aspects of my lifestyle for complete freedom (in terms of time), it would be a hard decision to return to the rat-race.

On the topic of Stalin, his hands are covered in blood. That said, I dare anyone to take any "great" figure from history and find them free of sin, and the issue only gets worse when it comes to leaders of nations. There are no angels in this life, and when it comes to the murky nature of high diplomacy and ruling a nation those sins are on a much larger scale. Throw in that from appearences the majority of this board come from a Western background and he'll rarely have many "fans"... be it a general dislike of the USSR during that period, the effect of media and indirect propaganda or even just his betryal of "true" communism, Stalin has never been a popular figure over here.

I think what Lithos said is probably the truth: he was a "great" man in terms of history; under his rule the USSR moved fully into the industrial age, dominated WW2 and became one of the most powerful nations in the world for long after his death. Other historical figures have seen their kingdoms/empires fall apart immediately after their death... Stalin never did. That said, millions died because of his paranoia and his show-trials and revisionist history were a war on truth. He was in no way a good man... almost certainly the opposite, but could a good man have done what he did?

Offline The Overlord

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #36 on: February 09, 2009, 04:57:08 AM »
This is one of the things in this discussion that has not much to do with original subject, but is something that should be addressed still. In some places, people actually appreciate work itself and working for something, it is not all about money everywhere. Even if such view of work is foreign to your mindset does not mean that it would not be popular somewhere else. Where I am, you will still have your apartment, and you will still get by in your life just fine, even if you did not work at all, yet still people both work hard and try to get rid of being unemployded as quickly as possible.

I guess that makes a solid point on cultural mindsets. Some people live to work, and others work to live, I am definitely in the latter camp. No fracking way I'm going into work unless they're paying me...it's not about the money, it's about what comes with the money. If I didn't have to work and could meet all my finances awesome, I'd be playing video games most of the day and doing my artwork, taking out a significant other on anything from dinner to traveling internationally with her.

Unfortunately, I haven't yet figured out how to do that, so for the time being I'm back to square one. I'll work for you, but you gotta pay my ass.

Offline Trieste

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Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #37 on: February 09, 2009, 06:23:08 AM »
Speaking of stereotypes...

You don't agree with my view of Russia and the USSR and that's fine. It's a free world after all.

I have nothing against Russia, nor against the USSR. I didn't live there, and it broke up well before I was old enough to care about any other countries aside from my own.

But it appears that you don't enjoy having stereotypes flung at you any more than I do, eh?

Online Dashenka

Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #38 on: February 09, 2009, 08:06:22 AM »
No.. I don't like it when people in a conversation go personal. I never pointed out any specific country or person. You did.



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Re: ...wtf...Stalin
« Reply #39 on: February 09, 2009, 08:25:31 AM »
Just as a linguistic note, English sucks when it comes to pronouns.  There is no convenient way to distinguish 'you (personal)', 'you (generic)' or even 'you (plural)'.  Unless the English speaker is Southern, in which case there's y'all.

Just something to consider during international debate.